Memorial Day Weekend 2018

The weather in Iowa has been very hot lately, with Memorial Day Weekend featuring temperatures in the upper 90s. Adventureland begins daily operation now, and Adventure Bay has also opened for the season.

On Memorial Day Monday, crowds seemed pretty tame early on. Around noon, parking was still mostly using the main up-front lot (Lot 4, I believe). There was, however, a major line at the ticket booths, filling the full queue and extended out past the planters:

The ticket line extended out from the permanent zig-zag queue and out to the right in this photo.

Inside the park, most of the rides had very shot lines, with many basically being a walk-on. I expect most visiting that day were down at the water park.

Main Street

On Main Street, work continues at the fire station. When Adventureland opened in the 1970s, this location was meant to replicate a town fire station, complete with some form of fire truck/wagon on display. In later years, it was used for stroller rentals before finally becoming a small merchandise shop. It looks like the garage door may have been removed, possibly indicating this location will become an extension of retail space for the shops in that area.

Fire Station construction.

Down the way, work continues on the new Doc and Leone’s Diner project. The front sidewalk is roped off, and the windows are uncovered. Inside you can see the new 1950s-style tables and chairs, and even catch a glimpse of a jukebox. It looks like the walls have all been redone too, in fancy 50’s diner style. The park has said this location will open in early June.

Doc and Leone’s Diner is showing major progress.

The locations formerly used by Airbrush Avenue are still closed, and it did not look like anything had been going on inside yet.

Signs, Signs, Everywhere a Sign

A number of new signs have appeared in the park, such as new restroom signs…

Several of these new blue restroom signs have appeared throughout the park.

As well as nice new signage on the Rathskeller.

Rathskeller has several new signs around it.

As mentioned in the Facebook group, the Tea Cups also got new signage this year;

An upgraded Tea Cups sign.

Flag Day

In addition to new signs, it was also pointed out that new flags have appeared around the park. Some are tied to the location – such as Iowa flags flying over at Iowa Beer & Wine

Iowa State Flag at the Iowa Beer & Wine Shop.

…and country flags flying over in River City:

Italy flags over the pizza place, and Mexico flags over Corona Cantina. I did not realize how similar these country flags were.

…as well as Germany flags at Rathskeller:

Germany flags at Rathskeller

Some flags are a bit different, such as a Navy flag flying over Infant Ocean:

Navy flag at Infant Ocean.

And, of course, pirate flags at the Galleon.

Pirate flag at the Galleon.

There are various other flags lining buildings and such, but I’d have to check past year’s photos to see if these are new for this year. Adventureland has always had plenty of building-top flags in the park.

The Circus is in Town!

Memorial Day Weekend also marks the return of the Adventureland Circus, presented by Billy Martin. New signs for the circus have appeared in several places in the park:

New circus signs!

Even with a very small audience at the 1 o’clock show, and temperatures in the upper 90’s, the circus gave the same high energy performance as they would to a  full audience on a much milder day. The circus has added some new lighting effects inside, as well.

New projections inside the circus tent.

And this thing was amazing:

The circus is a must-see for this act alone.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch…

On the way to the circus through Outlaw Gulch, it looks like the Sawmill Splash has a new wooden fence:

New fencing along Sawmill Splash.

And over at Sheriff Sam’s Saloon, it looks like the building has been repainted.

Sheriff Sam’s Saloon appears to have been repainted. And flags!

Stepping inside, it appears the flooring has been updated, and a new wall constructed.

New flooring (?) and wall inside Sheriff Sam’s Saloon.

This seems to block the light better for Ben Ulin’s Glow Show. They were keeping one of the doors open, instead of them closing during that show.

And, did you notice the four new hitching posts that have been added? These would be where the cowboys would have tied up their horse when visiting the saloon.

Hitching posts!

Bernie’s Barnyard

The new children’s play area has gone vertical, and is visible from within the park.

Bernie’s Barnyard play area.

And landscapers are hard at work on this hot day, too.

(I think she’s camera shy. I was trying to show all all the work she was doing placing the new flowers and such.)

And, when you exit, you can even get a sneak peek at the new Bernie statue:

Bernie statue.

…and appreciate all the work that is going on inside:

Bernie’s Construction Land.

More to come…

The day was hot, so my visit was short. I am sure there are many more things to be discovered this season. Like, how did I miss the relocation of the bowling ball game? Dee/Anna mentioned it was near the Skee-Ball area now, so it looks like some Skee-Ball machines have been retired:

This stupid and impossible and frustrating bowling ball game is, unfortunately, still here, taunting me.

Nothing has yet taken over it’s former spot, but, the jumbo crane game seems to be ready:

Giant crane game, ready to play?

Oh, they moved the smoking BBQ pit, too.

Until next update…


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